Popular Mechanics recently published an article entitled The Pungent History of America’s Garbage Mountains. The article starts with a little-known ferryman on Lake Michigan when a storm beached his craft on an oﬀshore sandbar in July 1886. Thus started Chicago’s open dump on today’s Lake Shore Drive, home to landmarks such as the Museum of Contemporary Art, the Wrigley Building, the Chicago Tribune Tower, Northwestern University, and the Magniﬁcent Mile – all on turn-of-the-century garbage.
Transportation centers, stadiums, and even entire neighborhoods are now built on landﬁlls. This is a fascinating, well-written article on the history and possibilities of building on remediated properties and brownfields.
“Landﬁll redevelopment projects tend to be real estate projects, and you know what matters in real estate: location, location, location,” says Mike McLaughlin of SCS Engineers, who specializes in brownﬁelds and landﬁll redevelopment. “A landﬁll in an urban area might be the only piece of open land in that area. People go to extraordinary lengths to redevelop because the property is so valuable.”